A town centre post office has increased its workforce after staffing issues were forcing it to close at short notice.

Customers were going to Whitehaven Post Office in WHSmith during opening times to find that it was closed.

Michael Moon, who owns a book store on Lowther Street and sends his books all over the world, had reported difficulties with the service.

He has now started using facilities in Cleator Moor and Moorclose instead to meet his business’ needs.

Mr Moon said: “I don’t go anymore. I was walking round and discovering there was nobody there and they were shutting two hours earlier than it said on the board. It doesn’t help me at all.”

Whitehaven town councillor Graham Roberts said: “We realise that people have got to have their lunch but it would have been better if they had staggered it.

“We are all under duress at the moment. They are working under very difficult circumstances. They are keeping the service going but it must be frustrating for customers.

“They have always served me well but I can understand it would be very frustrating.”

Cllr Roberts said he “applauded” the post office for taking on another member of staff.

He said: “That is good. Let’s hope that normal services can be resumed as soon as possible.”

A Post Office spokesperson said: “Whitehaven Post Office, operated by WHSmith, has unfortunately experienced some staffing issues recently due to illness and a vacancy.

“The impact to staffing levels during this exceptional time has regrettably affected opening hours.

 “We are pleased confirm that a new position has been recruited and they are currently undergoing training; this additional support will help with staffing levels and a return to normal trading hours.”

Customers are advised to check www.postoffice.co.uk/branch-finder for the latest advice on opening hours.

READ MORE: Book shop owner concerned over Post Office provisions in Whitehaven